By Harvey Byrne

Former Olympiakos manager Michel is the current front runner for the Nottingham Forest managerial position and Ryan Giggs is not currently among those in the running, according to reports.

The Nottingham Post claim that contact has been made with Michel and Forest keen to make an appointment before the end of the week.

Michel was in charge of the Olympiakos for just under two years, where he won two Greek titles and the Greek Cup during his short stay.

Julen Lopetegui, Victor Sanchez and Gianfranco Zola are said to be the other three leading candidates for the vacant position.

Intriguingly, Olympiakos president Evangelos Marinakis is working to secure an 80 per cent stake in the east Midlands club.

He is said to be involved in the Forest appointment process and is likely to be advancing the case of Michel.

Chairman Al Hasawi had previously stated that he wanted to sign a British manager with Championship experience, however the club is now leaning towards offering the job to an overseas figure who will be more comfortable working in a ‘head coach’ role.

Lopetegui, 49, coached Spain at under-17, under-19, under-20 and under-21 level and also had a short spell in charge of Rayo Vellecano. He left Porto in January after 20 months in charge.

It remains unclear whether Sanchez would be viewed as a candidate for the manager role or, potentially, to work alongside Michel.

Sanchez, 40, is another former Real Madrid player who has frequently worked on Michel’s coaching staff, most recently when the duo were together at Olympiacos.

Although Sanchez has more recently had a spell of head coach at Deportivo La Coruna, however that only lasted a season as he was sacked after the team finished 15th, winning just two of their final 22 games.

Forest, who hope to make an appointment before the full squad return to full pre-season training on Monday seem likely to head down the path of appointing an overseas coach – with Zola, the Italian former West Ham and Watford manager, also previously having been heavily linked with the job.

In other football news, Leeds are eyeing up a move for Barnsley centre-back Alfie Mawson after Tommy Elphick joined Aston Villa on Monday.